Seriti Commission considers critics' withdrawal

Johannesburg - The Seriti Commission of Inquiry is considering the decision by three arms deal critics to withdraw from all proceedings, it said on Thursday.

"It appears to the Commission that these witnesses do not have evidence to put before it and want the commission to help them search for possible proof for the allegations of wrongdoing in the arms procurement process," spokesperson William Baloyi said in a statement.

"And if their approach is to be followed this commission will still be here in 2016 and possibly beyond."

Former ANC MP Andrew Feinstein, author Paul Holden and Hennie van Vuuren announced on Thursday that they were withdrawing from the commission.

They said they could no longer co-operate with an institution that "is [so] deeply compromised that its primary outcome will be to cover up".

All three were expected to testify in the commission.

The commission, chaired by Judge Willie Seriti, was appointed by President Jacob Zuma three years ago to investigate alleged corruption in the 1999 arms deal.

Earlier, Feinstein said it was the commission's job to access all evidence available in the country and abroad, to assess its veracity, and to make it available to the public.

The critics have charged that the commission has not done this.

Van Vuuren said the decision to withdraw from the commission was not taken lightly and that the three critics believed the commission had missed its opportunity to support the struggle for transparency and accountability.

Asked if there were any legal implications in withdrawing, Holden said the subpoenas sent to the three had expired.

Feinstein was expected to testify at the commission on 4 August, Holden on 5 August, and Van Vuuren the day after.

Baloyi said the subpoenas that had been served remained valid and if they had lapsed they could be re-issued.

"The commission is considering their decision to no longer participate in its enquiry and a decision will be made at a later stage," he said.

robespear 2014/08/28 10:50:42 PM
Deepandsoulfulhouse DjVido Buka 2014/08/28 11:22:28 PM
From the Pic above, he does look like a Puppet
Themba Beuk Bevu 2014/08/28 11:47:43 PM
Seriti is another zuma lapdog who are there for covering these anc corrupt criminals with our tax money
Danie Nel 2014/08/29 01:18:02 AM
This commission is just another cover up for Zuma.
Henk Brand 2014/08/29 02:01:15 AM
Start a criminal case and get Bulldog to ask the questions.
Ronald 2014/08/29 02:24:59 AM
Three years down the line and Sereti is yet to grant permission for the famed containers at the Hawks’ Pretoria headquarters containing 4 million documents to be indexed and presented, nor the evidence used in Germany, Switzerland and the USA to obtain convictions against individuals and companies, that has been boxed and offered to the NPA and Sereti Commission..
BigPete 2014/08/29 03:19:03 AM
This commisson has been a farce since day 1
On The Edge 2014/08/29 06:01:07 AM
No f'ing wonder BooZanc ipso ill! Everything he's touched has turned to muck! I imagine that he takes sleeping pills cause there is no way a reasonable man could fall sound asleep when not only whites and the world, but those who voted for you start seen you for what you are! Yet as alluded to before, there is no way that he alone is responsible for all these atrocities... his puppet strings are being pulled by those running the CancER from Luthuli House... BooZanc is simply the easy way out, the fall guy when things get tight (like they are right now)... YOU, yes you Sheeple of Zanc, don't be fooled to think that once BooZanc is gone that all will be better! Make sure you replace the entire head of the rotting fish as it will not stop stinking until you clean 'house'... You need a Thuli Madonsela at the head who will identify the rot and heal what once may have been a sound party with universal ideologies (not that think so, it was always going to be difficult to appear sincere when thugs are at the head of the party back in apartheid!)
Archie Dempster 2014/08/29 06:13:28 AM
I can't see where ANC president can appoint some one to investigate where the ANC members are involved
Oppie Koppie 2014/08/29 06:28:15 AM
This commision was compromised when it was assembled by @rseman Zuma. Its just been 3 years of wasted time and money